Lady Flyers’ hoops team wealthy with high scorers and rebounders

By STEPHEN GLOVER

For the Call

Imagine having three players on your basketball team who have the potential to score in double figures and pull down more than five rebounds each time they step on the court.

Such a scenario is the case for Bill Thoele, the head girl’s basketball coach at Lindbergh High School. Thoele and his staff are looking forward to the Flyers having a successful 2004-2005 campaign.

“I think that things are going pretty good for us right now,” Thoele told the Call. “We have our top two scorers returning and we have a lot of competition for the other starting spots.”

Lindbergh senior Amy Hake returns to the Flyers after putting up 14.6 points per game and four rebounds per game last season.

The 5-foot-9-inch guard drained 33 shots from behind the three-point arch while racking up 64 assists and a team-leading 135 steals.

“She (Hake) works about as hard as anyone during practice,” Thoele said. “She knows that she can be a better player and one thing that I know that she wants to improve on is her three-point shot. I honestly think that she’ll be a better college player than a high school player.”

Also scoring in double figures for the Flyers last season was senior forward Paula Smith, who averaged 10.6 points and 6.6 rebounds a game. At 5 feet 11 inches, Smith is a shot-blocking threat after swatting a team-high 53 blocks during the 2003-2004 season.

“You know that you’re going to get double figures in scoring and six or seven rebounds a game from her,” Thoele said. “When we have a good inside game with her, we’re hard to defend.”

Thoele also believes that junior 6-foot center Meghan Endicott is another player who should become a major contributor to the Flyers’ offense after scoring 5.8 points and 5.7 rebounds a game as a sophomore.

“Top to bottom, Meghan is probably the hardest worker on the team,” Thoele said. “She’s worked really hard this past summer and I expect her to score in double figures. I’m just so excited because I know she’ll be one of our top players this year.”

Junior Courtney Kiel spent most of last season playing center, where she scored 2.7 points and grabbed 3.7 re-bounds a game. At 6 feet, Kiel’s size, speed and ability to run the floor prompted the head coach to move her to forward/guard this year, where he believes she’ll spark the Flyer offense.

Senior Tara Austin along with classmate Lauren Mohan and junior Sarah Bushschacher are three other players that Thoele believes are key factors to the Flyers success this season.

“Tara’s going to be able to give us some valuable minutes off the bench,” Thoele said. “She works really hard and is a very coachable player.”

Last season Austin averaged 1.2 points per game in 14 games played. The forward also pulled down 13 rebounds.

Mohan joins the varsity squad after spending last season with the junior varsity squad as a forward/guard. Bushschacher saw limited action last season, but has proved herself on the practice floor.

“Lauren has a very positive attitude and really makes an effort out there,” Thoele said. And, “Sarah and Meghan are really good friends and have been really pounding each other in practice.”

The Flyers open the 2004 season at 7 p.m. Monday as they travel to Rockwood Summit to battle the Falcons.